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Carolyn Hennes

Student

  • 4 reviews
  • 2 completed
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If you eat food, if you care about the environment, and if you are interested in how to provide for our present needs without damaging the planet for future generations, this is a good primer. There are some specific farm management practices addressed, mainly from Florida, one of our leading agricultural states, but not in great detail. For some international students who are already farming, this is a good introduction into practices they aren't familiar with and could boost their productivity and profit while at the same time conserve resources. For a young person exploring new career ideas, this would be a great introduction to the fact that we need more farmers as well as current philosophies behind food production and land management. The discussion boards were amazing, and took up the largest segment of time I spent on course work--not because I had to, but because I enjoyed communicating with the diverse international group that were taking the class with me. There is an optional project to complete to get the highest certificate, which I did not do. I thought there wouldn't be opportunity to complete it before the end of the course. Apparently I could have still done it even without reporting on any final outcomes. I hope the class is offered again and I highly recommend it.
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Took this class in winter 2013. It was okay, and a decent primer, but it took several weeks to get out just a few concepts-do your research, target the specific needs of a specific market, put together a good team, and have a good plan. Now you don't need to sign up.
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Promoted as the first Cousera course targeting under-prepared writers, it has a fast pace(5 weeks) and is set up for valuable practice experience. However, too many peers ignored assignment instructions which made the peer review process a nightmare. Peers seemed bent on inventing their own content, so perhaps the course should have a little more leadership to anticipate problems, present, then enforce the standards. On the positive side, staff, including the instructor, were frequently on the boards to answer questions. On the downside those answers weren't announced generally and the confusion would continue to spread. Suggestions: In addition to the online skills primer the course begins with, there needs to be a lecture in cultural and linguistic diversity, warning to strictly adhere to assignment directions, and an explanation of the honor code especially regarding plagiarism. They plan to offer the course again in September with some (undisclosed) changes. It could be really valuable with some tweaks.
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I appreciated a doctor at a prestigious university verifying processed food is bad for your health. Government, through the lobbyist-controlled USDA and FDA, isn't being honest with us. Dr. Adams speaks directly to parents (mothers, mostly) and says start cooking simple foods at home if you want your children to be healthy. The videos are short and non-technical, but there are optional presentations and readings that go more in-depth. It changed my behavior for the better.